2019 BMW 1-Series Preparing For War With New A-Class

The BMW 1-Series has, for a long time, been the ugly duckling in the company’s compact range. Fortunately, an all-new generation model is on the cards and it promises to be much more appealing to the eye.

Aimed squarely at the Audi A3 and the new-generation Mercedes-Benz A-Class, the 2019 BMW 1-Series will have its work cut out in competing in this ever-increasingly crowded segment. How will BMW ensure it’s competitive?

For starters, the hatchback will be underpinned by the brand’s UKL platform, meaning it will switch from rear-wheel drive to front-wheel drive, just like the A-Class. Additionally, a permanent 5-door body style will further distinguish the car from the outgoing model.

Alongside the new body style, we know that the front and rear fascias of the 1-Series will be overhauled, as evidenced by these images. More specifically, the car will adopt edgier taillights and headlights, providing it with a sportier appearance.

A host of other comprehensive modifications are also on the cards. For example, all six-cylinder engines will likely be removed from the 1-Series family and replaced solely by four-cylinder units. As such, a range-topping M140i model would utilize a turbocharged four-cylinder that sends power to the ground through BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system. Taking a leaf out of the new A-Class playbook, a hybrid is also expected at a later date.

Photo credits: CarPix and SB-Medien for CarScoops

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  • no25

    preparing for the war it already lost..the shape looks awful so far, but I guess I can’t really say anything until the camo comes off.

    • Bash

      lol I just came few minutes after you to position something exactly the opposite.
      I actually thing this looks more masculine! But as you said, gotta wait until the camo comes off.

    • lagunas3ca

      No, it already lost.

  • Anthony James

    The unique proportions of a FR hatch will be lost. I understand that BMW will have deemed the draw-backs of having the 1 series RWD unacceptable but I really see it as a crying shame. That was that cars distinguishing factor. Saying that, I think the current M140i is a bit of an investment, as the package of a six cylinder, manual RWD hatch will not happen again for a while…

    • lagunas3ca

      There are no drawbacks to the RWD 1 Series. Period.

      • Dennis James

        Efficiency, cabin and boot space and also manufacturing cost are the issues with the current 1-series. A RWD car suffers in those areas when compared to a FWD of the same size and quality. While excelling in dynamics.

        This being said, I hate to see BMW becoming a mainstream, “me too” manufacturer. I can choose any other car now instead of a 1-series.

        • Ilbirs

          BMW could have opted to be an all-RWD brand instead of going FWD as we’re seeing. It could have studied component packaging to prevent disadvantages like a too tall center tunnel (not that this problem doesn’t exist on some FWD platforms and we have the MQB spec used in the Golf VII as a clear example of a too tall tunnel). It could also design transmissions that doesn’t impale a car like the more recent RWD ones. It could also apply some knowledge that BMW Motorrad already has on how to put on the ground by using a driveshaft the power generated by an engine that is part of a very compact powertrain.
          Instead of this, the brand from Munich chose the path of dillute itself, remembering that it was already with some dillution before that 2-Series Active Tourer was shown to the world, ended the RWD tradition of the brand and started opening the doors to put a RWD Bimmer away from the people that could in the past afford a 1-Series.

  • Victor Ferreira

    So front wheel drive and no straight 6? At that point, what’s the point in buying a BMW? I could deal with the downsizing no problem, but if it’s going to be FWD, just get the Benz and call it a day.

  • DM

    Looks like we could be looking at a Kia or the new Focus… shame.

    • alexxx

      Actually Kia and new focus are going to look better… Hope I am wrong…I am long time bmw fan,but but…

  • erly5

    That long front overhang looks most in-BMW like. Not a lot to like so far!

  • Six Thousand Times

    I guess if the Mercedes Benz is FWD and the buyers don t know or care which set of wheels drive their cars…

  • Carenthusiast

    Rather evolving from current 1 Series this looks more like following X2 Design in terms of waistline and bonnet….

  • klowik

    It’s hard to design around the kidney grille to make it look refreshing, as long as the grille stays it still looks the same as previous generation…unlike Mercedes Benz, they just need to put the 3-points star logo in the grille of any forms and shapes.

  • Cobrajet

    The diagonal belt line is abhorrent, not what a BMW should have.

  • Miknik

    At some point, these FWD premium hatchbacks with 3 cylinder engines (or the A-Class with a torsion beam axle on many versions) will have to explain what exactly makes them premium over say a Ford Focus or Hyundai i30, apart from the badge

  • Elmediterraneo

    How can you make a war to the A-class when you’re don’t plan to make something as crazy as the AMG A45 (or A53?). The most powerful model will be a 300 hp M135i less powerful than 340 hp AMG A35 (or A40).

  • jb

    FWD BMW? Even saying it doesn’t sound right.

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